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Careers for the Future

Gauri Chhabra
Over the past few years, the world has shrunk into a flat ball and what flows as natural corollary to it is increasing carbon footprint, growing dependence on IT, spurt of educational institutions and a world that thrives on social networking. These have brought many new career options to the fore front.These careers are harbingers of the future and are laced with innovation,creativity and lucre.
Sustain ability consultant
Energy costs and climate change are two key drivers of many companies looking for green solutions. With increased focus on reducing carbon footprint and enhancing sustainability, more andmore organizations are joining the sustainability bandwagon. This opens the doors for careers such as Sustainability Consultant.
There are two distinct sustainability career paths. First, you can build it through degrees in business and public administration, physical or life sciences, engineering, social sciences or natural resources and conservation. Second, in case you have been responsible for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives of your organization, you can easily dovetail your skills and join the sustainability party. Even if you have a fresh MBA under your belt, you can join the risk management team. Most companies offer internships, which provide an opportunity to get to know the firm and for the firm to get to know you, and can be an excellent route to a full-time job offer.
What does a Sustainability
consultant do?
As a sustainability consultant, you would be responsible for looking new ways to reduce client costs and increase client competitiveness – core services that help keep them in business. Since the C -level executives are constantly focused on bottom line activities, your main job would be to measure and manage the company’s carbon footprint and address climate change-related liabilities. You would be responsible for preparing erudite reports and papers, and offering attractive, understandable ways for businesses to reduce costs and gain sustainable competitive advantage particularly in an era of rising energy costs.Besides, you would develop sustainability scorecards, which has a public relations and marketing dimension. You would also be conducting online research on environmental regulatory updates, calculating the energy consumption for manufacturing a particular product, and presenting sustainability compliance report findings to clients, upper management or regulatory officials.
Who would hire you?
The companies that are gravitating towards sustainability and trying to position themselves as thought leaders in this domain  are Accenture,Deloitte, BCG, McKinsey etc.While the sustainability practice groups of these firms are often relatively new, they are growing, and represent an emerging area of opportunity, particularly for MBAs and mid-career experts.In some cases, these firms offer sustainability as a component of risk management. Where it’s far more exciting and innovative, of course, is when it looks at a wholesale transformation of business strategy.
As a Sustainability practitioner, you would rarely be confined to just one area of expertise – instead, you need to draw upon a range of different disciplines to come up with solutions that address environmental, economic and social needs. Sustainability’s focus on interdisciplinary problem-solving might be a tall order to meet, but it’s also an exceptional opportunity. How many other professions allow you to make a positive difference across so many diverse areas?
Market Research Data miner
Have you ever noticed that every time you shop at your favorite retail outlet like Big Bazar and Best Price, you are asked to fill a form that encapsulates your name, date of birth, contact information, and your feedback about the purchases and your shopping experience. Customer information and management becomes vital to the retail experience, businesses are compiling data and mining data in droves.
This calls for the careers such as Market research data miner.In order to become good data mining practitioner you need to understand statistical concepts and basic principles of knowledge induction. Knowing inferential stats, t-tests, analysis of variance, regressions, and so on is important.You need to know some academic or commercial software, since you won’t be doing logistic regression on a piece of paper. Knowing the business application of the model is very important. Segmentations, cross-selling, retention, customer value and profitability are particularly common.
What would you be required to do?
You would be required to use pattern recognition technologies and statistical and mathematical techniques to sift through warehoused information, and recognize significant facts, relationships, trends, patterns, exceptions and anomalies that might otherwise go unnoticed. Besides, your analysis would result in market segmentation, customer churn, fraud detection, direct marketing, market basket analysis ie  understand what products or services are commonly purchased together; e.g., beer and diapers and trend analysis.
Who would hire you?
With companies like Google and Facebook leading the way in collecting customer data, there may still be room for developers that focus on creating analytics software capable of bringing all that data together and providing additional insight. Almost all companies who are interested in Customer relationship Management would hire you especially the FMCG sector where the need to mine customer behavior and sentiment from social and other Web-based platforms is crucial.
Admission consultant
Over the past decade, the number of education institutes has increased exponentially and so have the number of courses and degrees. This confuses the students as they are overwhelmed with myriad career options and colleges that would give them the value for their money. Here is when Admission consultants come in the picture.
Admissions consultants work with people applying for college, so it is a requirement that the consultant has successfully applied for a school of their choice. Go for a degree in business, psychology, counseling or human resources.
What would you be required to do?
You would be required to help students pick the best programs and improve their chances of being admitted to colleges. You would also help them in filling application forms, writing college essays, meeting deadlines, and preparing for interviews over the course of months or a year.
Who would hire you?
Many schools, colleges and counseling firms hire people to help young students choose their college track. You may be offered a number of positions, starting with lower degrees and moving up to the position of consultant. A few years of refreshing the different issues faced when applying for college will help you to qualify for consulting work. Those of you with an entrepreneur traitcan consider becoming a private consultant. Here, your network with families, schools and colleges would help.
Social media manager
In today’s fast and fluid world, social networking sites like twitter, Linked in,facebook play a major role in determining the mind space that a person, brand or organization occupies in the minds of the consumers. One of the major factors behind the success and increasing popularity of Aam Aadmi Party(AAP) is the way it has been able to connect with the masses through the social media.
This creates a need for Social Media Manager- the person who is responsible for maintaining your presence in the social networking audience.
What would you do?
As a Social Media manager, you would be responsible for posting relevant information about your organization on the media- right where people would love to see it. You gain an instant mileage by doing that. Google and sometimes even your Twitter feed serves as Yellow Pages for the buyer who is looking for information. Marketers are breaking their necks to create and provide it in high volume. To make your content cater and reach out to the right audience, seek customer feedback. A great social media manager understands the importance of customer feedback and its effect on improving the product or service. Next, you would be responsible for introducing your company as a thought leader in a particular domain.  Keep an open dialogue, whether it’s with a lead product designer or C-level executives — and let their expertise be the basis for some of your posts. Start quoting your C level executives in social media updates. Conduct and post interviews. However you can, make sure you’re establishing your company as a thought leader rather than a piggy-backer. You would also be using social media as a prospecting tool and you need to recognize that there’s an audience out there that needs you. Specifically on Twitter, it’s extremely easy to monitor hashtags of relevance in order to identify these potential prospects.
Nothing allows for direct access to a brand quite like social media.
Who would hire you?
Almost every organization who thinks seriously about broadening customer base and enhancing brand retention and recall would hire you. You can earn as much as 4-10 lacs per annum by adding to the to line activities.
Therefore, this 2014, think out of the box and pave your way to an offbeat career thatis creative as well as with lucrative.

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